Beowulf vs. The Canterbury Tales Essay

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For centuries, children stories have been a valuable tool in teaching lessons and morals. Like most stories that one was read as a child, there lies a life lesson that the author is trying to portray. Whether it was told orally like the story Beowulf or written by an author like Chaucer who wrote The Canterbury Tales, there are life lessons that are being taught through the characters and their challenges that they endure. The main character and hero in the story Beowulf, Beowulf shows many heroic traits that German culture valued at that time. He is physically built and strong, making him more than capable to defend the Danes against the monster Grendel, his mother, and the dragon. “In his far off-home Beowulf, Higlac’s followers and …show more content…
On the contrary, in The Canterbury Tales, the three men show traits that are not heroic at all. On their journey to find and kill Death, they run into an elderly man and make rude remarks towards him. “What, old fool? Give place! Why are you all wrapped up except your face? Why live so long? Isn’t it time to die?” (Chaucer 170). It was important to respect the elders in that day in culture and still is today. They discover a prodigious amount of gold but greedy for more, the three men kill each other in hopes to get the others share. Through the characters actions, the audience can take away from this that greed is the root of all evil.
In addition, in Beowulf, lessons are taught through experiences and challenges that he faces. Beowulf has many life threatening battles but he is not frightened because he puts his trust and physical ability in God and believes that whatever the outcome is that it is in God’s plan. Grendel is viewed as a character associated with the devil and always trying to cause trouble. “To feud with Almighty God: Grendel saw that his strength was deserting him, his claws bound fast… (49).This expresses the societies’ belief in God and that there was a devil. In ones own life, their will always be struggles that one will have to overcome. Although Beowulf’s battles may be more gruesome and dangerous, one can take away from this that any battle that one is fighting can be accomplished with God and the determination

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